Have you been debating the possibility of finding a high quality, best performing and reliable long range scope under $1000? As your fellow hunter, I understand the importance of a scope in achieving long-range shooting accuracy.
However, it can be quite hard to find a budget long range scope that can guarantee precision shooting unless you are ready to break the bank.
Well, be informed that you can find a premium quality long-range scope and a very pocket friendly budget. All you need to do arm yourself with the right information via research.
Luckily, we have simplified things for you by providing you with a helpful buying guide as well as in-depth reviews of (in our view) the top 10 best long range scopes currently available.
We have also created a buying guide to help beginners find high quality, dependable, fully-functioning and good looking long-range scope at the best prices.
How to Find the Best Long Range Rifle Scope Under $1000
To commit a four figure amount to buying a riflescope means you are looking for a high quality and prestigious product that will make the shooting practice or hunting a worthy experience. Here are some of the most important considerations that will make a rifle scope worth your investment.
Lenses, also known as glass, are perhaps the most important feature in a rifle optic. Without it, this gun accessory is essentially worthless, especially when it comes to a long-range scope. You need lenses that can provide you with crystal clear view at both high and low magnifications.
Clear sharp glass comes in handy when reading mirage to enable precise target location in low magnification. The lens is what makes the difference between a $500 scope and $1000 scope. So, there is very little room for compromise when it comes to this feature.
The Cope’s Body
Any high-quality long-range riflescope must be made of strong and durable materials. The quality of the material is also an important determinant of the scope’s precision. The best material so far for rifle optics is aircraft grade aluminum, which is well known for its durability and lightweight.
When it comes to body’s design, I would recommend you go for single piece design, which boosts durability and precision.
The Scope’s Reticle
Many specialty reticles exist out there, all of which work well, but what you need is a reticle featuring single dots or hash marks spread horizontally and vertically. The measurements could be MIL or MOA but must be separated evenly.
While it may take you time to master using the reticle, you will find it extremely handy when it comes to long range shooting. High quality reticles allow for consistent holdover for windage compensation and elevation changes.
Magnification power is a confusing feature for many beginners. The common and partly erroneous belief is that higher magnification power is associated with better performance. The truth is that the magnification power depends much on your situation and your shooting goals.
For instance, magnification power of between 10X and 40X is great for long-range shooting for a competition but not hunting. Hunters will need more versatile magnification power.
Besides the reticule, the focal plane is equally important in target precision. You can choose between two categories of focal planes scopes – front focal plane and second focal plane. With front focal plane scopes, the reticle will change size with decreases on increases in magnification.
Second focal plane scopes, on the other hand, the reticle maintains the same size. In my view, front focal plane scopes are better than the second focal planes because the harsh or dot marks never change and they are always 1 MOA or MIL apart which guarantees accuracy.
A good long range scope under 1000 should allow you to adjust your turrets on the fly. This is because long range shooting requires adjustments in elevation and windage. Certain rounds such as the famous 308 can drop by more than 50 inches at 500 yards.
Imagine what will happen at a thousand or so yards. This requires you to make the necessary adjustments to mitigate the drop and improve the accuracy for best scope for ruger 10/22.
I consider the factors discussed above most important. However, few other non-specific factors should influence your choice. For an instant, you should go for a lightweight scope if you wish to keep you rifle light.
A scope with night vision is also great. High caliber weapons may require a specific scope due to its recoil, which could break incomparable scopes.
Top 10 Best Long Range Scopes Under 1000 Dollars
If you are a veteran shooter or hunter that needs to upgrade his weapon to handle much more, I now present you with my top 10 of the very best long-range riflescopes. You will not believe these gadgets cost less than a thousand bucks.
Vortex Optics VHS-4310 Viper HS-T 6-24×50 Riflescope
You are unlikely to go wrong by choosing the Viper HST if you are looking for a versatile riflescope for a variety of long-range shooting applications. The HST in the name denotes hunting shooting tactical giving you the feel of versatility this scope will bring you.
Vortex Optics built this device on an ultra-strong and lightweight 30mm single piece aluminum tube. This construction gives the scope increased windage and elevation travel, and optimal adjustment.
The scope features a technologically advanced optical system that is highlighted with a 4X zoom range to deliver powerful and versatile magnification. Another interesting and functional feature is the eye forgiving with optimized eye relief designed to guide you on target rapidly and effortlessly.
To add to these already great features, the Viper HST features an incredibly accurate, durable and repeatable tactical elevation and windage turrets that are specially designed for dialing along with a hash mark based reticle.
The scope’s extra-low dispersion (XD) glass or lens improves color fidelity and resolution giving forth to crisp, sharp images.
The scale of this scope maintains proportion to the zoomed image while constant sub-tensions allow for accurate holdover as well as ranging at all magnifications. All these features make Viper HS-T a high quality yet extremely affordable riflescope.
- An incredibly versatile tool for a variety of shooting applications
- Strong and durable thanks to aluminum construction
- Equipped to deliver crisp sharp images
- Advanced design for rapid and effortless targeting
- It comes with a VIP unconditional Vortex Optics Lifetime Warranty
- Very simple to use thanks to great reticle
- Some users claim to have received poorly finished rifle scopes but these are isolated cases
- Some design flaw that makes the reticle misaligned and therefore fails to work properly
SWFA SS 3-15×42 Tactical Rifle Scope
Since its release in 2013, the SWFA SS 3-15×42 has been gaining popularity because of its great performance. Although less costly than its predecessors – 5-20x and 10xHD models – this long-range scope is stacked with more features than its bargain-priced fixed magnification models.
It features blocky turrets and fluted ocular housing that is made of aircraft grade 30mm aluminum tube for lightweight and durability. The matte finish gives the scope a nice, professional look.
The scope was among the first to be fitted with SWFA’s patented first focal plane Mil-Quad reticle that makes it highly convenient to hold for wind in total disregard of its power setting. This allows you to more accurately break the reticle’s half-mil marks and diamond for more accurate targeting.
It features a small peg or lever on its magnification ring, which offers you a better grasp when you need to change the magnification quickly.
The device features a side parallax knob, which is very convenient along with the graded markings (06m to infinity) making it easy to set the distance in a tactical situation without necessarily messing around trying to focus on the fly. The SWFA SS 3-15×42 is fitted with high-quality lenses (glass) capable of delivering crisp, sharp images and therefore the details of your target for accurate shots.
- The scope contains features and specification beyond its price range
- Provides crisp, sharp images for optimal performance
- This scope is highly versatile and perfect for a variety of shooting applications
- Incredibly positive MOA clicks and adjustments
- Cleverly coated glass design enhances contrast where needed
- Superior lenses and patented focal plane Mil-Quad
- The coating made to enhance contrast can make certain objects seem darker in other lights
- Does not come with mounting instructions although it may not be a problem if you know your machine
Bushnell Elite Tactical Illuminated G2DMR FFP Reticle Riflescope
The Bushnell Elite Tactical Riflescope is an ideal choice for those who wish to possess a perfect accessory to advance their shooting skills. It brings with it a precise marksmanship making it one of the most reliable yet affordable long-range scopes currently in the market.
To know how great this device is, it was developed through consultation with the law enforcement and military agencies who decided to come up with a superior product that offers excellence in even the most rugged conditions.
This tactical riflescope features Bushnell’s exclusive Rainguard HD lens coating perfectly designed to prevent external moisture and fogging from interfering with your shot. The lenses also feature Bushnell’s new extra wide band coating to boost brightness in low light situations such as dawn and dusk.
Its blackened-out finish provides for added stealth while the finger adjustable, 0-resettable, 0.1 Mil target turrets provide for accuracy.
The 30 mm tube design looks sleek and comes as one piece for more accuracy. The design also includes a sunshade that is about three inches for shooting in sunny conditions. The scope features G2 Designated Marksman Reticle (DMR) that is also inclusive of the reliable first focal plane (FFP).
This stabilizes the shot in disregard of the wind, holdover, and range across various magnifications and distances. To improve shooting accuracy, the scope features side focus adjustable parallax.
- Incredible image clarity for utmost accuracy
- Rainguard Technology keeps the lens clear in any conditions
- Adjustable magnification power provides for utmost versatility
- Side focus parallax adjustment is great for long-range accuracy
- 30mm single-piece tube with sunshade is functional and convenient
- Seems not to track accurately on the marks on the dials
- Reticle is described as illuminated but some units lack this feature
Trijicon TR24 AccuPoint 1-4×24 Dual-Illuminated Riflescope
With a budget of less than $1000, you will hardly believe you can get such a great riflescope like the Trijicon TR24 AccuPoint Dual-Illuminated. It is fitted with multi-coated lenses that provide incredible clarity as well as light gathering capabilities with zero distortion.
This long-range scope features advanced fiber-optic technology, which automatically adjusts the contrast and brightness levels of the reticle aiming point to the prevailing light conditions. A unique tritium phosphor lamp provides battery-free illumination of the reticle in low light or no light situations.
The scope’s aircraft-grade aluminum housing provides an all-weather rugged construction that protects the internal parts of the device against extreme environmental conditions.
Unlike the long-range scopes we have reviewed so far, the TR24 AccuPoint features second focal plane reticle which maintains its size constant with increases or decreases in magnification. This provides the scope with the ability to provide more accurate aiming-point or target at higher magnifications.
Even better is that the illuminated reticle does not project any form of illumination from the objective lens thus guaranteeing zero emissions. This scope is water-resistant to 10 feet giving it the strength to endure all conditions.
To provide you with the confidence you need to buy this scope, the manufacturer offers you a limited lifetime warranty on optical systems and metal structure and a 15-year warranty on the tritium phosphor lamp.
- Superior clarity and light gathering abilities
- Super strong body made of aircraft grade hard anodized aluminum
- Totally battery-free operation for convenience and ease of use
- The scope is illuminated providing superior performance
- Solid black matte finish is extremely elegant
- It is water-resistant to 10 feet for use in all weather conditions
- The illumination is great but it may interfere with the green dot in the reticle especially when you are using the scope in bright sunlight.
Vortex Viper HS-T 6-24x50mm Riflescope
This special budget riflescope amalgamates the excellence of its cousins Viper PST and Viper HS giving it a performance better than most models in its class. The Vortex Viper HS-T 6-24x50mm is engineered for versatile sighting utility for both hunter and tactical shooting enthusiasts using weapons ranging from ARs to bolt guns.
This scope uses premium extra-low dispersion (XD) glass on its lenses to improve resolution and color fidelity. The lenses are multicoated to limit reflection on air to glass boundaries and boost light transmission.
Besides the great lenses, this scope features tactically calibrated VMR-1 reticle. The reticle is hash marked for precise long-range holds. Alternatively, you can use a MRAD variant. You have to keep in mind that the reticle is a second focal plane. Therefore, you will need extra effort each time you wish to set up a new shot.
The scope’s 30mm aluminum one-piece tube construction ensures structural reliability and integrity. This construction material is also fog-proof and waterproof allowing you to shoot in any condition.
To improve extreme weather performance, this long-range scope is coated with a strong, scratch resistant material on the outer lenses to repel oil, dirt, and scratches. To wrap it all, the Viper HS-T 6-24x50mm is one of the few riflescopes that feature fast focus eyepiece that is free from eye clearance problems.
- Excellent image quality for and clarity even in low or no light situations
- VMR second focal plane allows for windage and holdover corrections without interfering with your view
- Rugged, durable single-piece 30mm aluminum housing
- Extended zoom range with decent eye-relief
- CRS zero stop and tactical adjustment controls make field adjustments enjoyable and intuitive
- The second focal plane is great but requires time to master to use correctly
- The crosshairs are somewhat difficult to see, they need to be a little bit thicker.
Armasight Vampire 3X Night Vision Rifle Scope
Featuring Armasight’s proprietary Ceramic optical Ruggedized Engine (CORE), the Vampire 3X Night Vision Rifle Scope is one of the best long-range scopes under $1000 currently in the market. The CORE technology provides two times the resolution of Gen 1 device.
This way, it provides flatter, clearer night vision images. Thus, the CORE platform provides the best in class resolution with a whopping 60-70 lp/mm.
The platform also provides increased photocathode sensitivity levels that can achieve up to 400 μA/lm. This guarantees image quality that only compares to that of high-end Gen 2 image tubes even when you use it in challenging ambient light situations.
The housing if this unit is solid aluminum, which is rubber coated and has a sealed o-ring to provide for further protection. The unit comes with a soft carrying case, batteries, operator manual as well as all the necessary hardware for solid mounting.
When it comes to performance, this long-range scope boasts of multi-coated, all-glass lenses and manually adjustable fine reticle responsible for very easy shot placement. Vampire is nitrogen treated and is resistant to water, dust, scratch, and sand to allow you shoot in any condition.
It comes with tactical rails for illuminators or lasers making the scope ideal for tactical marksmen, predator hunters and any other gun enthusiast looking for a compact, lightweight, sturdy and sleek night vision riflescope.
- Durable, solid aluminum construction that is nitrogen treated for excellent service
- Fitted with high-quality glasses that provide the highest level of clarity
- Compact, sturdy and low weight night vision long-range riflescope
- Detachable, long-range infrared or laser illuminator
- A battery is included with low battery indicator
- Quick release mounts and mounts to standard weaver rails
- The magnification is a little low for certain shooting projects
- Although lightweight, some users may find this unit a bit bulky
Sightron SIII SS 624×50 LR FFP/MOA 30mm Rifle Scope
Sightron is not one of the more popular long-range scope brands out there but they certainly produce some of the best yet affordable shooting accessories in the market. The Sightron SIII SS 624×50 LR FFP/MOA is one of their best models.
If features FFP reticle with a small central target dot (0.25 MOA dot) that fits well within the black dots and hash dots that are visible but do cause too much obstruction.
This long-range riflescope offers extremely tactile clicks and adjustments free of lash when you dial in elevation or windage. This results in the round impact moving exactly. The design of the SIII consists of larger exposed turrets, rather than the all too common tall, covered turrets.
Besides, the eyepiece is rotated to provide focus adjustment and parallax on the side. The side parallax is not marked for distance because it is very easy to see when you dial in at X24.
It is fitted with clear glass as well as high magnification specifically designed for easy target shooting and spotting for other friends who would like to shoot with you.
The lenses feature 7-layer coating to offer protection while preventing reflection. The scope is made from aircraft-grade aluminum that is incredibly strong and lightweight. Anyone will love this budget long-range scope.
- Offers great tracking ability and excellent value
- Excellent eye relief allowing you to acquire target without fatigue
- Clear glass and optimal magnification for easy target shooting and spotting
- Very easy adjustment for windage as well as elevation
- The mil-dot reticle is incredibly easy to see without being intrusive
- The weight of this long-range scope is quite bulky due to reinforcement to make it waterproof, shockproof and fog proof.
- The elevation lacks zero-stop which is not cool for such a high-quality optic
Vortex Optics Viper HS 4-16×50 Riflescope
The Vortex Optics Viper HS-4-16×50 is a favorite long-range riflescope for both shooters and hunters. It features an advanced optics system that is highlighted with a 4X zoom range to provide magnification versatility. The optics are also fitted with a forgiving eye box with increased eye-relief to get you on target as quickly as possible.
The internal scope adjustments including the BDC (ballistic drop compensation) and the SFP (side focal plane) reticle give this unit a performance you will not obtain with most equally priced models. In comparison to other BDCs, this unit features finer hash marks designed to boost clarity and accuracy over extended distances.
In fact, the duplex type reticle boasts of stadia or hash marks that cross over the crosshairs at specified intervals to help you compensate for bullet drops and known distances.
To guarantee strength, durability, and reliability, this long-range scope from Vortex Optics is formed from an ultra-strong 30mm single-piece machined aluminum tube. The housing is also reinforced to improve its strength and resistance against dust, fog, moisture, and impact.
This construction also enables the Viper HS to deliver optimized windage as well as elevation travel for maximum adjustment. The unit is packed with many more features that make it a good choice for novices and professionals alike.
- An incredibly versatile scope for a variety of shooting applications
- Made of strong, durable and lightweight 30mm single-tube machined aluminum
- Zero Point elevation holds absolutely solid after hundreds of rounds
- The windage and elevation adjustments are dead on down range
- Includes a sunshade which is a nice addition to long-range shots in the line of vision of the sun
- As of the time of writing this review, I was not capable of finding any negative thing about this long-range scope. It is just great for its value.
Vortex Optics Viper 6.5-20×50
Vortex Optics is the winner in our top ten best long-range scopes under $1000 reviews. As common with all Vortex Optics Vipers, this unit uses extra-low dispersion (XD) glass specifically designed to optimize color fidelity and enhance resolution.
It also uses multiple coats of anti-reflective materials in all its air-to-glass junctions to achieve maximum light transmission. The result is an exceptionally clear picture of the target at all magnification powers.
The unit armed with Mil-dot reticle that is optimized for estimating the range, windage and bullet hold-over. This makes it especially great for long distance shooters/hunters that are in need of such ranging ability.
The single-piece 30mm aluminum tube design maximizes alignment and thus improved precision and visual performance. The housing is also compact and sturdy to ensure waterproof ability as well as strength.
To add to these wonderful features, the Viper also features Precision-Glide erector system. This system uses premium components in the zoom glass (or lens) to ensure smooth and effortless changes under the most extreme conditions.
The unit’s side knob parallax adjust enables quick and easy parallax adjustment with range numbers clearly visible when you have taken a shooting position. To summarize it, tall capped turrets allow quick and effortless field adjustments.
- Highly advanced Mil-Dot Reticle offers unmatched accuracy for perfect shooting experience
- A versatile long-range riflescope that can handle various shooting applications
- Offers excellent light transmission which translates into accurate targeting
- High-quality 50-mm lens ensures crisp clear pictures through the entire magnification range
- Quick focus eyepiece with effortless zero reset function
- You can choose from three reticle settings
- Comes with Vortex Optics limited warranty
- Somewhat inadequate eye forgiveness at higher magnifications
- Seems not to hold zero very well compared to others in its class
Nikon MONARCH 3 BDC Riflescope
Nikon is one of the most reputable companies. Their MONARCH 3 BDC riflescope has captured the attention of many hunters and marksmen looking for the best riflescopes under $1000. The unit features MONARCH 3 ballistic drop compensator (BDC) reticle that offers shooters and hunters revolutionary accuracy and ease of use for long range shooting.
It does this by incorporating tiny aiming circles into the reticle. This allows for precise, unobtrusive targeting points.
The MONARCH 3 offers 8 different magnifications and five different reticles meaning there is a unit for every application. In fact, Nikon has incorporated smooth zoom control with magnification reference numbers that you can view from your position. The included quick-focus eyepiece makes using the scope extremely easy.
The MONARCH also boasts of Nikon’s proprietary ClearCoat optical system that provides crystal clear images at all possible magnifications for long range accuracy. The unit is designed to deliver theoretical maximum light transmission a scope is capable of delivering (as much as 95 percent) for incredibly clear and sharp images between dawn and dusk.
Another great feature of this long-range scope is spring-loaded instant zero-reset turrets giving it an in-field advantage by allowing you to make adjustments easily on the fly.
Shooting Fundamentals – Long Range Shooting Technique
As with all high-quality long-range scopes, the Monarch 3 is constructed with 30mm one-piece aluminum, which is strong and durable. It is also coated to ensure the unit is waterproof, shockproof and fog proof.
- The BDC reticle offers utmost accuracy and ease of use
- Precise unobtrusive targeting points
- Performance-oriented designed with 30mm aircraft grade aluminum
- Zero reset turrets allow for easy adjustments even on the fly
- ClearCoat optic system is great in providing utmost clarity
- Factory provided lens covers are poor quality
- Many people find side parallax turrets difficult to use
A budget of $1000 or less is not too little for you to find a high-quality, even prestigious long range rifle scope. As you have just learned from our top 10 reviews of the best long range scopes under 1000 dollars, there is no limit to the potential of such scopes.
They are fitted with some of the greatest features and specifications that improve target acquisition while at the same time easy to use.
Check the prices of each of these models and I am certain you will love at least one of them. If you are new to long-range rifle scopes, then you can make use of the provided buying guide. I sincerely hope you have found this resource helpful.
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